Ring O’Bells history since closure
The Ring O’Bells in Prixford North Devon, (RO'B) had served the local community for more than 170 years until it closed on 8 April 2012.
Shortly after that fateful day a team of locals gathered themselves together with the sole purpose of re-opening the pub. One of the first achievements was a successful listing by the community of the Ring O'Bells as an Asset of Community Value in July 2013.
In September 2015 the pub was purchased by Philip Milton Construction and Maintenance Ltd.
As time has developed, it has become clear that the intention of the current owner is to develop the site, probably with residential properties.
The community were invited to a Pop-Up Pub event in June 2019 and asked whether they supported reinvigorating the campaign to get our pub back. The message was clear - they fully backed a renewed campaign.
As result the community applied for a new Asset of Community Value to be granted to the pub.
This application was successful and in 2019 a new Asset of Community Value was granted in respect of the pub for a further five years.
This was challenged by Philip Milton but that challenge was unsuccessful.
Further Pop-Up Pub events have taken place since then and it was recognised that a Steering Committee needed to be formed to drive through the wish of the community to get the pub back. This became more urgent when it was made clear that the unauthorised occupation of the pub may become lawful after a period of four years, which would make it much easier for the owner to obtain permission to redevelop the Ring O'Bells Site as houses, in which case the Pub would be lost forever.
We therefore formed a Steering Committee, engaged professional support and made a formal complaint to North Devon Council. This complaint asked that they undertake enforcement action before the four year period expires.
North Devon Council have since issued an Enforcement Notice against the unauthorised residential use of the property.
Mr Milton has appealed against the Enforcement Notice.
The Ring O'Bells Campaign commissioned a specialist planning advisor to write a response to the Planning Enforcement Appeal which was submitted at the end of February 2020. To see details of the Ring O'Bells Campaign's response click here
We currently await the Planning Inspectorate's decision on the Enforcement Appeal